The Cleveland Cavaliers filled their roster with young and promising talent in the 2019 NBA Draft, when they selected three players in the first round.
One of those selections was Belmont University product Dylan Windler. Windler turned a lot of heads during his performances in several Summer League games, and the 22-year-old rookie is already looking forward to what his ideal role will be for the Cavs in his first NBA season.
Evan Dammarell of Forbes.com wrote a feature on Windler and revealed the veteran that Windler is looking to emulate.
“Windler envisions himself making immediate contributions on offense in catch-and-shoot situations, off-ball cutting and plenty of pin downs,” he wrote. “In a sense, Windler will be utilized in Cleveland’s system similarly to how the Utah Jazz feature Joe Ingles. Windler agrees with that sentiment and shared that Ingles was a player he drew a lot of comparisons to coming out of Belmont. He believes this is because of their ability to pass, especially in the pick and roll as well as their mutual ability to stretch the floor.”
Ingles was in the NBA for three seasons before he became a predominant starter for the Jazz, but over the last two seasons he has started 163 out of the 164 regular season games his team has played. He’s a fantastic indication of just how valuable forwards who can hit shots from deep at a consistent click have become.
Both Windler and Ingles have similar frames at 6-foot-8. While Ingles has quite a bit of weight on the Cavs rookie, there is little doubt that Windler will be able to put on muscle as his professional career continues.
One interesting thing to note is the potential future competition between Windler and his new teammate Cedi Osman. Osman started 75 out of the 76 games he played for the Cavs last season and took a big leap, averaging 13.0 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 2.6 assists per game. He figures to enter this season as the starter for the Cavs as well, with Windler coming off the bench in relief.
If Windler is able to build off of his Summer League production in meaningful games, however, Cavs head coach John Beilein may be forced to consider giving Windler an opportunity with the starters.